Updated my link format to add the little infinity symbol (∞) with a permalink to the post. Just in case someone wants to comment on the links I’ve posted.

Due date is August 1st. The baby’s room is all set up. Clothes and diapers are washed, rewashed, washed again. Now, the waiting has begun. It’s difficult to think of much else. How does one distract from the birth of their first child? How does one focus on the present, on the deep breathes between today and tomorrow?

Facebook Unethically Experiments on Users, Now It’s Time to Delete

Going from creepy to completely unethical, Facebook ran a psychology experiment on almost 700,000 users. I’ve had a tenuous relationship with the service over the years, and now, I’m deleting my account for good. You can still find me here, on Twitter, and in real life. Looking at Facebook from a cost-benefit perspective, there was little in the benefit column. I “like” all of your baby pictures and will see you around.

Literature of War: At Home and Abroad

We’ve published our special issue “Literature of War: At Home and Abroad.” It’s full of poems and stories from veterans, family members, and other people who have been affected by the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Instead of reiterating what this issue means, I’ll share an excerpt from my introduction:

Meaning is a slippery word. If meaning were a man, I imagine a middleman, a person playing both sides and looking for the largest margin. There have been times in my life when I’ve searched for meaning outside of a given context. I’ve turned to fiction, to poetry, to the words of others. And, there have been times when I’ve believed those words to have no meaning, when I’ve felt outside of experience. Cutoff in my own world.

However, when I read the stories, poems, and nonfiction in this special issue of Scintilla, I’m in awe of the meaning these writers have brought forth, the vision, painful at times, that they have shared. For many of us, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have played out in a vacuum. If Vietnam was the first televised war, what were, what are these wars? The overlooked? The distant?

Spend some time with these writers and be open to a new experience.

Neil Degrasse Tyson to Send Ten Golden Records to Favorite Planets or Earth Will Be Blown Up

Neil Degrasse Tyson welcomes alien lifeforms to Earth.

Neil Degrasse Tyson welcomes alien lifeforms to Earth.

New York—Contact with alien lifeforms has been received. This morning, a probe containing a golden record of unidentified origin was brought to Earth and deposited in NASA headquarters. Authorities were baffled trying to decode the medium, until Neil Degrasse Tyson reached out to Charles Frank Bolden, Jr, stating that he had “a golden record player gifted to him by the late, Carl Sagan.”

A silent terror spread through the building upon deciphering the message. “It’s a call to action,” said Bolden, “but the question is: do we have the resources to make it happen?” Neil Degrasse Tyson has been tasked with heading up the mission, despite his whimsical vests. When asked for details, Degrasse Tyson responded: “It’s essentially a chain letter, but do we dare ignore it’s warnings?”

The golden record declares that whomever decodes the message must make ten copies and launch them at their favorite planets or face annihilation. Citizens may use PlanetQuest to make a suggestion, but NASA would like to remind Americans that Hoth is not real and Endor is technically a moon. “I’m a big fan of Tau Ceti e,” said Degrasse Tyson, “but we don’t have confirmation yet. Kepler-62e is definitely on my list.”

Despite warnings from the United States Postal Service and Congressional Budget Office regarding the potential drain on resources, the Obama administration has “gone all in,” a senior cabinet member said.

Is this all a response to Voyager I?

Is this all a response to Voyager I?

To ensure Americans are made aware of the threat, please share this with five friends or else a year of misfortune will follow you.“The good thing about science is that it’s true whether or not you believe in it,” said Neil Degrasse Tyson. “The bad thing about chain letters and golden records from other planets is you have no idea what to believe.”